TALLINN, November 14 (RIA Novosti) – Estonia announced on Thursday that it would extradite to the United States three people suspected of a massive Internet fraud scheme in which millions of computers in around 100 countries were infected with malicious software.
US authorities filed cybercrime charges against six Estonians and one Russian in November 2011 and requested their extradition one month later.
The suspects – Estonian nationals Dmitry Yegorov, Timur Gerasimenko and Konstantin Poltev – will be sent to the United States under a 2006 bilateral extradition treaty. A fourth group member, Anton Invanov, was extradited last year.
According to the FBI, 500,000 out of the 4 million computers infected with malware were in the United States. The computers include some belonging to US government agencies, such as NASA and the Inland Revenue Service.
The suspects are accused of infecting computers with malware that secretly altered the settings on infected computers to re-route Internet searches to certain websites and advertisements.
The suspects received fees each time these websites or ads were clicked on or viewed by users.
According to the FBI, the scheme generated about $14 million in illegitimate income. Estonian prosecutors believe the figure was double that.